Astrobiology is a recent field of research that attempts to understand the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life on Earth and in the universe.
- To address the issues of a wide range of topics in astrobiology, an inherently multi-disciplinary view as well as access to the latest tools in the areas of biology, astronomy, chemistry, physics, and planetary sciences, among others is required. In astrobiology, life on the planet is not considered a system that is self-contained and isolated from its astrophysical environment. Instead, it is observed as a component that affects and is affected by other components. In other words, the origin, evolution, and destiny of life are related to the evolution of the universe, the stars, and the planets.
- One of the topics that attracts most attention in this research is the search for life beyond Earth. Astrobiology, in its modern approach, uses microorganisms as its life model because of their great resistance and adaptability to the most diverse environments. This requires great efforts in the study of microbiological biodiversity here on earth, particularly in extreme environments, uncovering their survival mechanisms and ability to change their environment, thus generating biological signatures that can be detected from a distance, on other planets in the solar system or from other stars, using space probes or large telescopes.
- Some areas of research that can be addressed are as follows:
- Microbiology in extreme environments as analogs for astrobiology.
- The environmental response of extremophiles in under simulated extraterrestrial conditions.
- Multi-parameter simulation of extraterrestrial environments.
- Biosignatures of extremophiles for remote detection of life forms.
- Detection and characterization of the atmospheres of exoplanets and moons in the solar system. Interaction between life and astrophysical events.
- Prebiotic chemistry and the origins of life.